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Tiger soccer aims at conference title

Should a first year varsity program be thinking about winning a conference championship?

The New Richmond girls soccer team sure thinks so.

The Tigers started the week 5-1 at the midway point in conference play. It is their goal to go 6-0 in the second half of the conference season, which would lock up the conference title for New Richmond.

The only loss for New Richmond in the first half of the conference season was a storm-shortened loss to Amery. The Tigers will get their chance to make up for that loss this Thursday, when they play in Amery.

New Richmond started the week knowing that their next six games are all conference games.

"It's our hope to go 6-0," said Tiger coach Charles Conley.

The Tigers won their only conference game last week, a 2-1 homefield decision over Spooner in overtime. Brianna Richter scored both of the Tiger goals. In the overtime, she got a lead pass from Steph Anderson. She worked the ball upfield, then fired a shot over the head of the Spooner goalie, into the far corner of the net.

In their two other games last week, the Tigers lost to a pair of tough opponents. On Thursday the Tigers lost at Hayward 4-1, with Kiris Brockmiller getting the only Tiger score.

In both of the losses, the Tigers played evenly with their opponents, only to give up a goal late in the first half. The Tigers were tied with Hayward 1-1 until giving up a goal with five minutes left in the first half. Against Hudson, a strong team from the Big Rivers Conference, the game was scoreless until the Tigers allowed a goal in the final 30 seconds of the first half.

"We outplayed them for the majority of the game," Conley said of the Hudson game. "We can't afford mental defensive breakdowns."

Conley is still trying to find a lineup he is comfortable with, and he grows more secure with the lineup every game. He said last week the left side of the defense really became solidified, with Tasia Kelley and Kelly Grandt securing those positions.

After playing Amery on Thursday, the Tigers will be off until next Tuesday. That's when they will be playing at home, against Superior.

Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
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